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Statewide Long-Term Care Network Provides Critical Support & Training During COVID-19 Crisis

In the beginning of April, the Educational Support and Clinical Coaching Program (ESCCP) was rapidly launched in Pennsylvania to address long-term care facilities' needs. A partnership between the Jewish Healthcare Foundation (JHF), the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS), and seven Pennsylvania health systems, the ESCCP has provided long-term care staff with training and support to advance care for seniors across the Commonwealth. Since the program's start, JHF has hosted 15 webinars and engaged over 2,000 participants in discussions about COVID-19 response, preparation, and planning for the new normal that congregate living facilities will be facing.JHF serves as the convener, facilitator and core faculty for ESCCP, supplemented by clinical and service provider partners.

As a result, long-term care leaders have gained access to best practice lessons and feedback from peers and partners across the commonwealth. Webinar discussions focused on COVID-19 related education, including infection control, advance care planning, and caring for persons living with dementia. Medical professionals provided guidance about new techniques and tools that can be used in residential care support, including implementation of large-scale use of telehealth for primary and palliative care.

Through the webinars, participants developed actionable strategies tailored to their population, resources, and workforce. Participants received access to over 200 COVID-19 related resources curated for personal care and assisted living facilities on the Tomorrow's Healthcare learning platform, as well as the opportunity to obtain Personal Care Home Administrator training hours.

Media attention to the ESCCP has also emerged across the commonwealth, with articles from PublicSource of Pittsburgh, Chester County, Altoona, York, and Harrisburg.

The ESCCP's efforts have jumpstarted an improved response to long-term care staff's needs, but there is much work yet to be done. Given that the challenges of COVID will persist within long term care, JHF will continue to offer ESCCP webinars, resources, and support to promote care of seniors in personal care and assisted living facilities.
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